IFAR Journal

Volume 15, No. 2


Three Questioned Rembrandts Re-Enter the Canon: More to Come
— Lisa Duffy-Zeballos and Sharon Flescher
The two authors, respectively, IFAR’s art research director and executive director, discuss the recent reattribution to Rembrandt of three paintings that were previously attributed to his followers. The three works, all differing in style, are among numerous previously rejected paintings that have been reinstated by the Rembrandt Research Committee (RRP) under the direction of Ernst van de Wetering. The article also explains the focus of each of the six volumes of the Corpus of Rembrandt Paintings.

The Changing of the Guard at IFAR: Jack A. Josephson Passes the Chairman’s Baton to Anthony Williams
— Sharon Flescher
A tribute to IFAR’s outgoing chairman, who played a major role in reshaping the organization’s mission and will remain on the board, and an enthusiastic welcome for a new chairman with a different but equally distinguished background.

News & Updates: New Life Breathed into Claim for Norton Simon Cranachs: Broader Implications for Other Holocaust Claims; Debate Spills out to Media
— Sharon Flescher and Ann-Margret Gidley
An update on a case, Von Saher v. Norton Simon Museum of Art, reported on previously in IFAR Journal, concerning the claims of the heir to the Goudstikker art collection on two paintings in the museum’s collection, Cranach’s Adam and Eve. The case was revived in June when a federal appellate court in California decided Von Saher’s claims were not pre-empted by the foreign affairs doctrine, thus reversing a 2012 dismissal by a lower court.

News & Updates: Twitter Photos Protected by Copyright: AFP & Getty Ordered to Pay $1.2 Million
— Ann-Margret Gidley and Sharon Flescher
A discussion of the case, Agence France Press v. Morel, which addressed the question of whether a photographer who uploads images to a social media site like Twitter retains copyright in those works. A New York federal court held that under specific circumstances such images are subject to copyright limitations.

News & Updates: Van Gogh’s Night Café Will Remain Open: Claimant Loses Suit Against Yale
— Nicholas Dietz
An update on a case, Yale University v. Pierre Konowoloff, reported on previously in IFAR Journal, concerning an ownership dispute over Van Gogh’s Night Café involving the Yale University Art Gallery and the heir to Ivan Morosov, the work’s pre-Bolshevik Russian owner. Also mentioned is a similar suit by the same claimant, Konowaloff v. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, concerning the Cézanne painting Madame Cézanne in the Conservatory.

News & Updates: Matisse’s Odalisque Returns Home
— Sharon Flescher
An update on a story reported on previously in IFAR Journal concerning the theft and recovery of Henri Matisse’s Odalisque with Red Pantaloons, which was stolen from a museum in Caracas, Venezuela and replaced with a fake. IFAR was asked by the government to undertake provenance research on the painting before it was returned to Caracas.

In Memoriam: Lee MacCormick Edwards
— Gertrude Wilmers
An IFAR trustee remembers fellow art historian and IFAR board member, Lee MacCormack Edwards – a larger-than-life personality whose contacts, generosity, and accomplishments greatly benefited the organization.

News & Updates: Prince Copyright Suit Settled: Thorny Issues Left Unaddressed
— Ann-Margaret Gidley and Sharon Flescher
An update on the case Cariou v. Prince, reported on previously in IFAR Journal, in which the photographer Patrick Cariou brought numerous copyright infringement claims against appropriation artist Richard Prince. Most of the claims were dismissed in 2013 on the grounds of “fair use.” The remaining claims on five works were withdrawn in early 2014 as part of an out-of-court settlement.

News & Updates: Reunited: Three Khmer Sculptures Return to Cambodia
— Ann-Margret Gidley and Sharon Flescher
The coda to a story reported on previously in IFAR Journal about a successful Cambodian campaign to repatriate three Khmer sculptures – one from Christie’s, one from Sotheby’s, and the third from the Norton Simon Museum – all now reunited in Cambodia.

News & Updates: SLAM Mummy Mask Can Rest in Peace in the Museum – for Now
— Ann-Margret Gidley and Sharon Flescher
An update on a case reported on several times previously in IFAR Journal, United States v. Mask of Ka-Nefer-Nefer, wherein the U. S. government attempted to seize and repatriate to Egypt an ancient funerary mask in the collection of the St. Louis Art Museum (SLAM). An Eighth Circuit Appellate Court recently sided with SLAM.

News & Updates: Mongolia Dinosaur Redux: More Fossils Returned While Smuggler Heads to Prison
— Ann-Margret Gidley and Sharon Flescher
An update on a story reported on previously in IFAR Journal about a successful Mongolian campaign to repatriate several dinosaur skeletons and a fossilized egg. Recovery operations by Homeland Security Investigations (HIS) were aided by the outcome of a criminal case, U.S. v. Prokopi, and a related civil forfeiture case, U.S. v. One Tyrannosaurus Bataar Skeleton.

News & Updates: California Museum Relinquishes Thai and Native American Antiquities
— Ann-Margret Gidley and Sharon Flescher
A follow-up to a 2008 news story about the raid by federal agents of two galleries, a private collection, and four California museums following an undercover investigation of an alleged smuggling network responsible for distributing looted Asian and Native American artifacts to U.S. museums as tax-deductible donations at inflated values. As part of a non-prosecution agreement, the Bowers Museum has agreed to surrender ancient Thai artifacts to Thailand and Native American artifacts to the U.S. 

News & Updates: Moves on Cultural Exchange Legislation
— Ann-Margret Gidley and Sharon Flescher
A discussion of two pieces of pending legislation – one in the U.S. and the other in Europe -- that would impact cultural exchange. The U.S. bill, the Foreign Cultural Exchange Jurisdictional Immunity Clarification Act, is intended to shield foreign-owned objects from lawsuits while on loan to U.S. institutions. In contrast, a proposed European Union Directive would facilitate the recovery by E. U. Member States of unlawfully removed objects classified as national treasures.

Letter to the Editor: RE: Artists Resale Rights in the U.S.: Overdue or Shouldn’t Do?
— Don Kaul
A response to the published proceedings of an IFAR Evening on artists resale rights in the U.S. (IFAR Journal, Vol. 14, no. 4/Vol. 15, no. 1) in which the writer notes the absence of an art collector on the program’s panel of speakers and argues that the collector, not the artist, takes an economic risk when a work of art is bought or sold.

Stolen Art
Stolen items include Lucas Cranach's Charity and Pieter Brueghel II's Wedding Dance, stolen in Lons le Saulnier, France; and Georges Braque's Yellow Basket, Raoul Dufy's Red Orchestra , and Albert Marquet's Le port de Collioure, stolen in Nice, France; Emil Nolde's Christ at Emmaus, stolen in Denmark.

Recovered Art
Recovered items include Pierre Bonnard's The Girl with Two Chairs and Paul Gauguin's Fruit on a Table with a Small Dog, stolen in England; Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn's Child with a Soap Bubble, stolen in Draguignan, France; Norman Rockwell's Sport, stolen in Queens, NY

Missing Art
Missing items include Arpan Caur's Prakriti and Francis Newton Souza's Untitled, missing in transit from Singapore to Bangalore; Sidney Percy Kendrick's Battle of Rorke's Drift, missing in Sutton, Canada.